BIG REFORMS, NOT BIG SPENDING.

I was delighted with Ed Miliband’s recent announcement on series of One Nation reforms to help create a new era of success for Britain and business in which everyone has the chance to make – and share in – future prosperity.

His speech builds on the Ed Balls’ commitments earlier last week to making reforms to support long-term investment and tackle tax avoidance.

 

 

Sir John Armitt has conducted an independent review commissioned by Labour on the subject. In his final report report (which you can download here), Sir John calls for the establishment of an independent National Infrastructure Commission to identify the UK’s long-term infrastructure needs and monitor the plans developed by governments to meet them.

A national consensus on long term infrastructure planning and decision-making will mean Britain can be equipped for future success as part a plan to tackle the chronic short-termism which holds Britain and business back currently.

Establishing this commission will be one of a series of big reforms, not big spending, that will help rebuild trust in both state and markets – so that Labour and dynamic businesses can succeed together in a shared mission to create wealth, jobs and profits for the future. Reforming markets like finance and energy so that they work for business and for Britain will be critical too, as will creating a welfare state that encourages young people to sign up for training not sign on for benefits.

All these measures will have positive repercussions for individuals and families around Edinburgh South, tackling deep-rooted problems that won’t be solved simply by a belated return to growth.

As Sir John says, the UK needs affordable clean energy, modern communication systems, flood defences that can cope with the effects of climate change and a transport system that can cope with ever growing demand and which links business with markets and people with families, leisure and job opportunities.

If we fail to meet these challenges, we will fail to grow our economy and fail to provide the quality of life that we would want for our children and our grandchildren.

 

 

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Ian Murray for Edinburgh South